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Military Experience and SWAT

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Posted almost 7 years ago

 

Hey,
I'm in college right now and seriously considering joining a SWAT team in the future. My college has a great Army ROTC program, and the people I've talked to said that prior military experience is definitely beneficial if one wants to get into a SWAT team. I just wanted input from SWAT officers to see how many really have had prior military experience before being accepted into a SWAT team. I'm really not sure whether or not I want to contract with the army, so I was just wondering what my options are.
Thanks!

Patton_max50

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Rate This | Posted almost 7 years ago

 

There is a world of differance in LE and Military.. yes military experiance is a plus... but those Johnny Rambo types find that LE is very mundane due to Legal issues and politics (the size of dept has great effects on this). I would say that you should not excpect the same military type attitude but the tactics are the same or similar in nature... one ex ranger explained it this way,, Sit Wait and Talk (SWAT) TACTICS ARE THE LAST OPTION... I would have to agree in 30 + callouts we have never enguaged the suspect... its all perimiter work and negotiations,, except for high risk warrants and drug raids. I would venture to guess you will have to work at least 2 years on the street and then apply and pass a agility test and some departments give written test, oral review board and then try outs. If you were a REMF (Rear Echelon M*** F**&^) you might have a harder time proving yourself compared to a Infantry type, SF, Force Recon ect. I have prior Military and it helped but I was a Medic and thats my job on our team so it fit what they needed,, Oh yea dont try to BS your way into a Team the DD214 does not lie.

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Rate This | Posted almost 7 years ago

 

It does help, but it's not a requirement. Obviously, original SWAT (LAPD) came about through the use of more aggressive tactics against greater threat levels than what departments were prepared for, by a bunch of prior service guys.

Mpcorps_regimentalcrest_max50

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Rate This | Posted almost 7 years ago

 

If you want to do L&O after the military I would say join the MIlitary Police. I know it's different than outside agencies, but you get "policing" experience and you get to work on your tactical and IPC skills. Most people think the MIlitary Police are only Garrison or REMFs, but we do actually do alot of tactical stuff. It's kind of a catch all. I'm a current MP and from what I've talked to my friends in other agencies they all say the same thing. Even though you will have the military experience, it's just an edge. Every department will do things a lil differently.

2012-10-14_15-49-09_546_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

Enigmatic said:

Hey,
I'm in college right now and seriously considering joining a SWAT team in the future. My college has a great Army ROTC program, and the people I've talked to said that prior military experience is definitely beneficial if one wants to get into a SWAT team. I just wanted input from SWAT officers to see how many really have had prior military experience before being accepted into a SWAT team. I'm really not sure whether or not I want to contract with the army, so I was just wondering what my options are.
Thanks!

I think they mean military experience as in a deployment to a combat zone, not a cadet program where you learn drill and ceremony and little emphasis on entering and clearing a room with evil doers inside! lol As far as the military for experience to utilize on a tactical police team, you'd want to look at infantry, military police, cavalry, special forces, etc., in order to get that real-life experience. I'm an MP and trust me, I've got lots of that, as do most of my brother and some sister MP soldiers!!

Photo_user_blank_big

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

ok im new and dont wanna make yall think im comin out of the gate correctin people. with that said, to bjjmp, i too am one of the "combat cops", they no longer provide garrison training for mps during ait, its up to your unit to train you now on that but they cant quailify you so its a waste of time in my opinion. as far as SWAT goes, if your looking to get the SWAT experience i would recommend requesting QRF to anyone going into the mp corps. thats what i am and ive been doning the exact same training (sometimes even by local SWAT teams) that they do. with that said whats your training unit and post? if you have any questions about signing up come to me and i will help anyone in any way i can.

Glock_tiger_17_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

LawdawgTravMCSO said:


Enigmatic said:


Hey,
I'm in college right now and seriously considering joining a SWAT team in the future. My college has a great Army ROTC program, and the people I've talked to said that prior military experience is definitely beneficial if one wants to get into a SWAT team. I just wanted input from SWAT officers to see how many really have had prior military experience before being accepted into a SWAT team. I'm really not sure whether or not I want to contract with the army, so I was just wondering what my options are.
Thanks!


I think they mean military experience as in a deployment to a combat zone, not a cadet program where you learn drill and ceremony and little emphasis on entering and clearing a room with evil doers inside! lol As far as the military for experience to utilize on a tactical police team, you'd want to look at infantry, military police, cavalry, special forces, etc., in order to get that real-life experience. I'm an MP and trust me, I've got lots of that, as do most of my brother and some sister MP soldiers!!


Gotta give Travis the High 5 on this one. Hit the nail with the 20 pound sledge hammer.


Everything you do can get you killed, including doing nothing at all..

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

Yeah, I meant I was considering ROTC so I could be deployed after graduation and have actual military experience, and I was wondering how military experience would help me (yeah, I wasn't meaning just the ROTC program at school; drill and ceremony has NO application to SWAT). I guess I'm looking to see if it's better to have prior military experience (MP, etc.) before SWAT, or if a background of being in the, say, Seattle Police Department would be better instead.

N1202178746_305955_5462_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

Military training is always helpful, you may already know this but just in case, keep in mind once you get on to an agency most likely you will not get right onto a SWAT/SRT. You may have to earn your keep first. With us it's about a 3 year minimum.


Pain is weakness leaving the body.

Obstacles are what we see when we take our eyes off the goal.

2012-10-14_15-49-09_546_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

catm2005 said:


LawdawgTravMCSO said:



Enigmatic said:


Hey,
I'm in college right now and seriously considering joining a SWAT team in the future. My college has a great Army ROTC program, and the people I've talked to said that prior military experience is definitely beneficial if one wants to get into a SWAT team. I just wanted input from SWAT officers to see how many really have had prior military experience before being accepted into a SWAT team. I'm really not sure whether or not I want to contract with the army, so I was just wondering what my options are.
Thanks!


I think they mean military experience as in a deployment to a combat zone, not a cadet program where you learn drill and ceremony and little emphasis on entering and clearing a room with evil doers inside! lol As far as the military for experience to utilize on a tactical police team, you'd want to look at infantry, military police, cavalry, special forces, etc., in order to get that real-life experience. I'm an MP and trust me, I've got lots of that, as do most of my brother and some sister MP soldiers!!



Gotta give Travis the High 5 on this one. Hit the nail with the 20 pound sledge hammer.


LOL, thanks!

N1202178746_305955_5462_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

LawdawgTravMCSO said:


catm2005 said:



LawdawgTravMCSO said:



Enigmatic said:


Hey,
I'm in college right now and seriously considering joining a SWAT team in the future. My college has a great Army ROTC program, and the people I've talked to said that prior military experience is definitely beneficial if one wants to get into a SWAT team. I just wanted input from SWAT officers to see how many really have had prior military experience before being accepted into a SWAT team. I'm really not sure whether or not I want to contract with the army, so I was just wondering what my options are.
Thanks!


I think they mean military experience as in a deployment to a combat zone, not a cadet program where you learn drill and ceremony and little emphasis on entering and clearing a room with evil doers inside! lol As far as the military for experience to utilize on a tactical police team, you'd want to look at infantry, military police, cavalry, special forces, etc., in order to get that real-life experience. I'm an MP and trust me, I've got lots of that, as do most of my brother and some sister MP soldiers!!



Gotta give Travis the High 5 on this one. Hit the nail with the 20 pound sledge hammer.



LOL, thanks!


Hey I'm looking for a career change I'm pretty good at watering my lawn, what do you guys think I need to do to become a fire chief? LMAO


Pain is weakness leaving the body.

Obstacles are what we see when we take our eyes off the goal.

Img_0372_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

Spending two tours overseas as enlisted has taught me that it was the way to go. When it comes to experience, I never had my platoon commander stacked up outside a house with me. SRT doesn't have officers here, don't know how it is elsewhere.

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

I was a scout sniper in the military and once I got on with the PD I applied and was accepted as a Tactical Team for the PD. This was a volunteer (extra duty) done along with patrol. Once I got onto the team though I was assigned as a marksman. Then I went to entry team. when I interviewed for the slot my military background helped me.

M60_001_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

Military experience is a plus in many ways not related to SWAT. Unfortunately, most new and young cops lack any military experience and also lack discipline and motivation. Those are important for SWAT, not combat experience. The focus of the two is completely different. The military is designed to complete the mission above all else and to coin a phrase, "kill people and break things". LE SWAT tactics emphasize completing the mission but doing it in a way using measured response within the use of force continuum to protect people's lives.


 


Two completely different styles which don't transltae well to one another. It's more important in my view for a SWAT officer to be mature, knowledgeable, disciplined, and motivated. The idea that military makes the best SWAT is a myth.

Mpcorps_regimentalcrest_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

GRENADIER says ...



Military experience is a plus in many ways not related to SWAT. Unfortunately, most new and young cops lack any military experience and also lack discipline and motivation. Those are important for SWAT, not combat experience. The focus of the two is completely different. The military is designed to complete the mission above all else and to coin a phrase, "kill people and break things". LE SWAT tactics emphasize completing the mission but doing it in a way using measured response within the use of force continuum to protect people's lives.


 


Two completely different styles which don't transltae well to one another. It's more important in my view for a SWAT officer to be mature, knowledgeable, disciplined, and motivated. The idea that military makes the best SWAT is a myth.


First off I totally agree with you, that SWAT does have to be mature, knowledgeable, and all that, but the first SWAT team was made of Vietnam vets in LA.  If I am wrong feel free to correct me.  But the idea of soldiers just breaking things and killing people is a past stereo type for the most part.  There are two types of building entry, dynamic and precision(sp?).  Dynamic is where you blow it up making loud noises and shooting everything,  Precision deals with the best way to get in without alerting anyone.  Military Police can use both,  mostly however we opt for precision, for the fact that we do want to preserve life and value that.  To be a good SWAT officer you have to understand when and when not to shoot.  Whether you were infantry or a cook, if you enter a building in Iraq and shoot the wrong person you are just as responsible as a cop here in the states.
Military training and combat experience that you can take with you to the civlian PDs would be like, self control, IPC skills, or confidence under high stress situations.  I'm sorry but a college student with a CJ Degree just isn't what I'd call preped for a situation when the bullets start flying.  But to go back to what you had said earlier, yes you do have to have all the characteristics that you had mentioned in your last line to be an effective tac ops officer.

M60_001_max50

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Rate This | Posted over 6 years ago

 

I didn't say that BJ. In my experience the young officer's with no military and CJ degrees are some of the worst officers out there, and I've seen a few in 17 years. I prefer people with military experience working with me because they are more disciplined and have a good head on em. What I'm saying that the equating people  with military experience and SWAT are a natural fit is a myth. I knew one guy, who was a combat vet, who I would never have put on a team for his lack of maturity. Guess what, they did anyway because of teh assumption.


Military experience may be one component of an individual's fitness, but it's not what should be considered to the exclusion of all other factors.

20332587914925a7c73609c_max50

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Rate This | Posted almost 6 years ago

 

 Military is a plus in certain instances, I have to agree with Grenadier reference the discipline, ability to work as a team to ensure mission success and many times personal motivation. However with the variances in missions and the fact that the rules of engagement are vastly different between military and LE- ERT, the younger military team members often have a hard time transitioning.    


The key to being able to go home at the end of your shift..........Speed, Suprise, and Violence of Action

219_max50

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Rate This | Posted almost 6 years ago

 

When I was in Ramadi in 2004-05 as an MP with 1st MARDIV one of our primary roles was searching for and ultimately arresting "high profile targets" or big name bad guys from that area. I equate this role with some of the warrant service work that I've done in my LE career. Sure, some of the tools are different, and if a guy barricaided himself in a house in Ramadi, we'd usually utilize some form of air delivered high explosives to convince him to surrender (his soul to Allah) but a lot of the techniques we utilized for entry and small unit movement directly apply to the LE field.

Most certainly the qualities of discipling and intergity that the military strives to instill in it's people (though in some cases it seems not to take) re beneficial to a career in LE. That being said I want to convey that I think it's wrong the worng reason to join the military if it is your only one. Serving your country as a memeber of the armed forces is like being a LEO. It's more than a rung on the career ladder. To be successful at it and thus to gain the qualities you are seeking from it, one must at least for a period of time devote one's-self wholly to serving in that capacity. I guess what I'm saying is don't join for the wrong reasons, and any sole reason other than "I want to serve in the military" is the wrong one IMHO.

There, now it should be as clear as mud for you. If I can be of any more help or if you have any specific questions feel free to PM me.

I'll close by saying that some of the best cops I know are prior military. MOST of the best cops that I work with daily are NOT prior service. I being a good police depends much more on the individual qualities of a person rather than any one facet of his or her background.

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Rate This | Posted almost 6 years ago

 

To the orignial poster...


Youll find that the military and civilian law enforcement are eons apart. Your ROTC doesnt count as military service. You generally need at least 2 years of active duty military time for most agencies to recognize military service as a benefit to you...either through civil service exams or preferential treatment outright w/ at will LE gigs.


Regarding Military Police.....thats what I am right now, and currently deployed. The job Army MPs do is VERY different from what we do in civilian law enforcement. The days of garrison policing are few and far between...now its all field MP work and detainee operations..ie corrections. My unit is currently tasked with convoy security and that is a main tasking of MPs in theater. What MPs do in the field would be more in line, and often exceed, with the capabilities of a SWAT or SRT unit.


Civilian police work is rarely tactical, unless you are in a tactical unit. The concentration is more on paperwork, laws, procedures, cuffing techniques, searching techniques, learning how to interact with the public (community policing)...etc etc.


The military is an outstanding base to have going into law enforcement....but I find most of the guys in LE dont have that background...and dont need it.